During sixteen years in Afghanistan, the Croatian troops have demonstrated exceptional professionalism, readiness, training, interoperability. They demonstrated that they can cooperate with other NATO members, that they are ready for any type of threat”, the President said, adding that it is an honour for her to present NATO medals to them for their contribution to the Resolute Support Mission as a token of gratitude from the Alliance.

President Grabar-Kitarović emphasized that in Afghanistan and in the area of South East and Central Asia, there are still enemies of peace, stability and security, and that security threats exist, particularly potentially terrorist ones compared to Croatia and the area of Europe and the European Union, that cannot defend themselves from terrorist acts except through joint action, an exchange of information and joint work on the prevention of such attacks.

She reminded that the result of threats throughout the world is the mobility of people mostly reflected in illegal migrations, but also in human trafficking, arms trafficking, drug trafficking and other prohibited things. “Therefore, I thank you for what you are doing here, you are defending Croatian security; you are defending our youth from opiates that mostly come from this State and you are defending our borders from illegal migrants. You can just imagine what would happen if the system collapsed and a million people set out for Europe and the European Union via Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina”, President Grabar-Kitarović said, adding that she feels that “these days it is clearer why Croatia is present in Afghanistan”.

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